Alaknanda River

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The Alaknanda (or Alakananda; Sanskrit: अळकनन्दा) is a Himalayan river in the state of Uttarakhand, India that is one of the two headstreams of the Ganges, the major river of Northern India and the holy river of Hinduism. The other headstream, Bhagirathi, which is longer, is the source stream.


The Alaknanda rises at the confluence and feet of the Satopanth and Bhagirath Kharak glaciers in Uttarakhand. It meets the Bhagirathi river at Devprayag after flowing for approximately through the Alaknanda valley. Its main tributaries are the Mandakini, Nandakini, and Pindar rivers. The Alaknanda system drains parts of Chamoli, Tehri, and Pauri districts.Singh Negi, Sharad (1995). Uttarakhand: Land and People, page 6. MD Publications Pvt Ltd. ISBN 8185880735.

Following the merging at Devprayag, the river is known as the Ganges. The Alaknanda contributes a significantly larger portion to the flow of the Ganges than the Bhagirathi. The Hindu pilgrimage centre of Badrinath lies along the banks of the Alaknanda river. The Alaknanda is also known for adventure sports like rafting.

In mythology, the Goddess Ganga descended to earth at Gangotri, the original source of the Bhagirathi before the Gangotri Glacier receded to its current location at Gomukh. The Alaknanda is believed to have split off from the celestial Ganges when it descended from heaven.

The origin of Alakananda River is of special interest to the tourists who dare to...
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